Watch: Bill Nye educates Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn on climate change

Bill Nye “the Science Guy” schooled climate change skeptic and Tennessee Republican Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn on NBC’s Meet the Press this morning.

When Blackburn, a “proud climate change denier,” and Vice Chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, made the fallacious claim that there is no “consensus” in the scientific community about the causes of climate change, Nye was quick to point out her error:

“Once again, the congresswoman is trying to introduce doubt in the whole idea of climate change,” Nye said in response. “What I would just encourage everybody to do is, let’s back up and look at the facts.”

At that point, Nye held up a map displaying the fact that the Antarctic has less ice than it used to.

When Blackburn opined “there is not agreement around the fact of exactly what is causing this (climate change)” Nye pointed out that Blackburn and other climate change deniers were trying to introduce uncertainty:

“This is unscientific, this is not logical,” he said. “It is a way, apparently, that the fossil fuel industry had dealt with our politics. This is not good. You don’t need a PhD in climate science to understand what’s going on, that we have overwhelming evidence that the climate is changing. That you cannot tie any one event to that is not the same as doubt about the whole thing.”

In other news on climate change, John Kerry delivered an urgent call to action on global warming today, calling it the “most fearsome” WMD we face, and sternly backhanding those who don’t believe climate change is happening as “flat Earthers.” “The science is unequivocal,” Kerry said, “and those who refuse to believe it are simply burying their heads in the sand. We don’t have time for a meeting anywhere of the Flat Earth Society.”

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  • Boothby171

    “Flat Earth Society”…Excellent!

  • Ty Killjoy Brummitt

    Sums it up.

  • Bawk Bawkbagawk

    Well… at least she didn’t try to blame gay marriage. That is what we call progress.

  • Ken F.

    She doesnt care about peoples lives. She cares only about her “bosses” bottom line. That’s how the 1% works.

  • George Lacy

    yep, she’s a politician.

  • Jacobi Coriolanus

    That was two different conversations. it was philosophy of science juxtaposing public policy commitments. These guests weren’t matched correctly.

    Bill Nye: I don’t understand policy. I think its really important the US stops sounding stupid and agrees with the Anglian interpretation of anthropogenic warming.

    Marsha Blackburn: I don’t understand the science. I think its really important the US doesn’t change its energy economy to force certain industries into planned obsolescence and lower GDP.

    Bill Nye: You deny climate change exists. I’ll apply a rhetorical dissection of generic climate skepticism rather than dispute your rhetoric.

    Marsha Blackburn: I came prepped with a lot of internal committee talking points so you won’t get an inscrutable soundbite from my actual dialogue.

    No one on either side of the fence would have been convinced by that exchange.

  • silverfox

    All she basically said was I’m don’t down with spending billions of billions of dollars, that no one has on a problem that no one can actually prove exist in the first place. Nobel prize winners are walking away from tenured jobs, Professors from Oxford, MIT, Stanford and many many many other highly prestigious universities from all around the world have pointed out all the still gaping holes in the piss poor science and grossly flawed methods that are used to “show” global warming” may or may not exist, so let’s get that shit together first. And let’s not forget, the phrase “climate change” implies that there is some sort of constant or “normal” expected weather that we all know is a bunch of bullshit in itself. The damn weather man can’t even accurately tell me when it’s going to rain 3 days from now, much less these asses trying to tell everyone that we’re screwing up the climate. Not to mention we are humans are only producing .58 percent (.5%) of the C02 being released into the atmosphere and everyones running around like a chicken with their heads cut off over that? This is nothing more than a new age religion, or an evolved form of religion. Tis is government controlled because they fund it and they use fear mongering to “scare” people into spending all their money on it without actually proving anyone of it’s legit in the first place. Show me proof, Just prove it to me and I’ll change my mind. This is all I require. Then again, I wouldn’t be an Atheist if someone could actually use science to prove god existed either. So I guess I’ll never buy into it. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for change to make things more efficient and cleaner and better, but this is the wrong way to go about doing it. This is madness.

    • Jacobi Coriolanus

      I’m not an anthropogenic warming hysteric by any means and there is definitely a political slant that tends to use appeal to authority particularly coming out of the Anglian school of thought, but I do want to make one point for reference.

      Climate change was adopted not because of skepticism but because global warming in the scientific community refers to a different scale and is limited to thermal temperatures. There are many other factors involved in the measurements so the term was expanded to account for that. I’m not going to ride Blackburn for being honest enough that her field of expertise is not climate science and then throwing out a lot of name dropping to not sound like a charlatan on a street corner holding elected office; nor did I really hear anything from Nye other than an attempt to kind of imply you were a member of the ignorati class for not accepting that particular interpretation and that mattered more than actual policy discussion, which is exactly backwards. Growing GDP will always lead to an increase in carbon emission. Its also been demonstrated increased human activity can have permanent effects on ecology. Its just the side that says they know “everything” about an ongoing issue and they have a nice “solution” to it should be something one can contest. Unfortunately there are too many people like Inhofe who are insane that it makes it easy to misconstrue the positions of honest dissent through sophistry.

      Which is why I said the guests were mismatched. Unlike Dawkins since Nye was willing to even acknowlege someone like Ken Ham I have to either think a) he wanted easy pickings, or b) he’s more interested in generic debates. I think they should have put a loon on like Inhofe or his ilk.

    • GA Hopper III

      What she basically said was: 1) There is no problem and 2) Even if there was we couldn’t do anything about it. Oh yeah, and 3) saying “cost/benefit analysis” a whole bunch of times. Here’s a funny thing: if we did all the things Nye was talking about, there would be an awful lot of work to do, which could get a lot of people working again, thereby addressing the problems that people feel are urgent, and also the environment we need to live. She had nothing specific to propose, no logic to rely on and very little to say and so stuck to being slippery and intangible and, ultimately, illustrating the stance of willful ignorance that the right wing seems to love, whether it is denying science or lauding faith as something more than a substitute for reason and evidence. Her talking points didn’t even make sense together, as she has no narrative or idea of truth and so made discrete and unrelated arguments that couldn’t be synthesized or reconciled. She should be embarrassed, but that’s nothing new for her.